Even though I’m homeschooling my oldest daughter, my youngest daughter isn’t quite ready to start “preschool” yet. While I’m homeschooling, it’s important to keep my youngest daughter engaged (and out of trouble). I love that activity trays can be set up ahead of time and whisked out when my daughter needs something to occupy her.
Here is a collection of 9 of my favourite activity tray ideas!
Magnet and magnetic pieces
A magnet and a handful of paper clips can keep a child busy for a long time!
Sea shells (or other natural items)
A tray of sea shells or other natural items such as rocks, leaves, or herbs can be a delight for a young child to explore.
Dice and counting items
Dice and a container of items to count are a delight!
Sorting and exploring colour
Get two sheets of the same paint sample cards from your local paint store. Cut one up and keep the other intact. Encourage your child to match the shades of colours!
Spelling with flashcards
Provide small letters with flashcards and encourage your child to “spell” (match) the letters to the flashcard.
This activity is great for building muscles in hands and fosters hand-eye coordination. Set up a pile of pom-poms with tweezers or tongs. Encourage your child to transfer the pom-poms, one-by-one, to another container.
Packing peanuts and pipe cleaners
This is another great activity for strengthening muscles in hands. Encourage your child to poke pipe cleaners into packing peanuts. See how many packing peanuts can be added onto one pipe cleaner.
Fingerpuppets are always a fun activity for young children. Provide a couple books for inspiration and watch them be engaged for a while!
I know I mentioned it before in my post about introducing sewing to children but sewing is one of my favourite hobbies. This activity tray simply needs a small square of plastic mesh, a blunt sewing/craft needle, and some yarn.
That’s it! Those are my 9 fabulous activity tray ideas for preschoolers! If you like the appearance of my actual trays, they are simply wood canvas boards which I bought from the Dollar store!
Do you use activity trays? If so, what are your favourite activity tray ideas?